After someone dies, anyone who thinks they are owed money or property by the deceased can file a claim against the estate. Estate claims range from many different types of debts, such as mortgages, credit card debt, loans, unpaid wages, or breach of contract. The deceased’s estate is responsible for paying or resolving all debts and claims filed against the estate using the assets in the estate.
According to Illinois probate law on estate claims, the personal representative of the deceased, who could be the executor of the estate or the deceased’s attorney, must post a notice in the appropriate local newspaper or law bulletin notifying the public of the death, and that all claims against the estate must be filed within 6 months.
In addition, the personal representative of the estate must notify everyone they know has a claim against the estate in writing that the person has died. If a claim is not filed within 6 months, the estate is not responsible for the claim.
The estate is responsible for paying the deceased’s debts and claims. After the estate is liquidated – converted to cash – all debts are paid first.
The Illinois Probate Act categorizes all claims against the deceased’s estate into seven classes:
After any claims against the estate are settled, the remaining assets are distributed to the heirs.
An experienced trusts and estates attorney can help the executor or personal representative of an estate file all legally required notifications and pay valid estate claims. To talk to a probate, trust and estates attorney in Chicago or Lombard about Illinois probate law and estate claims, contact the Estate & Probate Legal Group at (630) 800-0112.